ICC arrest of Netanyahu would be a victory: Pandor

IsraelI Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem.
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Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Naledi Pandor, says the arrest of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will be a victory for an ANC-led government, which supports the liberation of Palestinians.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) requested an arrest warrant for Netanyahu for crimes against humanity. Warrants have also been requested against some Hamas leaders.

Pandor made these comments while addressing the Muslim community in Polokwane, Limpopo, on the ANC’s stance on the Palestine situation during an ANC campaign trail.

Learners from Bakamoso Secondary School in Seshego outside Polokwane sang songs calling for the liberation of Palestinians. Pandor addressed a gathering on Palestine solidarity, reiterating the ANC’s opposition to the oppression of Palestinians.

“We are very pleased that the ICC, the International Criminal Court Chief Prosecutor Karim Khan, is finally seeking an arrest warrant for Benjamin Netanyahu for war crimes and crimes against humanity,” says Pandor. “We put together a credible team of leaders to support us in the International Court of Justice.”

Pandor emphasised the need for accountability from Israeli leaders. “What I can assure is that the ANC government will continue to lead the charge for justice for the Palestinian people. Our intention is to continue approaching the International Court of Justice to strengthen the original measures drafted by the court and to continue to push for accountability from the leaders of Israel,” she added.

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Meanwhile, representative of Polokwane Business Association, Ali Salman, expressed concern that Arab leaders and some political parties have remained silent on the genocide of Palestinians.

“The Zionist regime has been murdering and killing Palestinians with impunity for the last 76 years, and that has to stop. Palestine’s freedom is essential for the whole world. I’m disgusted that Arab leaders haven’t spoken out; in fact, they have been colluding and are complicit in the genocide of Palestinians,” said Salman.

Another community member, Solly Hassen, appreciated the South African government’s efforts to free Palestinians. “We want to see Palestine free. We really appreciate the call of Minister Naledi Pandor taking the case to the ICC. It makes us proud as South Africans, given our history with apartheid, that we are now fighting for the liberation of the Palestinian people,” Hassen states.

Israel and Hamas have been engaged in conflict since Palestinian gunmen killed over a thousand people. Israel’s military campaign has resulted in more than 35 000 Palestinian deaths.

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